How to Transfer a Drawing to a Pillow Case

Updated February 21, 2017

Create custom-designed pillow cases using drawings from your favourite family artists. Children especially enjoy seeing their drawings permanently displayed on pillow cases, blankets and T-shirts. To transfer a drawing to a pillow case, you can create a digital image of the drawing before making an iron-on transfer, or you can transfer the drawing by hand using pens designed to permanently adhere to fabric. Either way, the drawings become part or your home's decor

Scan the drawing into your computer or take a digital picture of the drawing and load it into your computer.

Set the printer to print as a mirror image. You can find this option in the properties section of your printer's software. Print the digital image of the drawing onto a sheet of transfer paper. Do not touch the paper until the ink is dry.

Set up the ironing board, but remove the soft cover. Iron-on transfers work best on a hard surface. Set up the iron and turn it on to the cotton or hot setting. While the iron is preheating, cut the excess paper from around the printed drawing.

Place the pillow case on the ironing board. Insert a piece of cardboard between the layers of the pillow case. This will prevent the image from transferring to the backside of the pillow case.

Position the transfer paper face down on the pillow case. Iron the paper with steady, circular motions from the outside to the centre. Do not allow the iron to sit on the image, keep it moving. Apply firm pressure as you iron. It normally takes about 30 seconds for the image to transfer onto the pillow case.

Peel the paper backing from the pillow case while it is still warm. Do not disturb the pillow case until the transferred image cools.

Set up the light box on a flat work surface. If you do not have a light box, you can place an uncovered light bulb beneath a glass table top.

Place the drawing that you wish to transfer on top of the light box. Tape the edges of the drawing in place so that it will not move.

Fit the pillow case on top of the light box, with the area where you wish to transfer the drawing facing up. Trace the outlines of the drawing onto the pillow case with a permanent marker or with fabric paint pens. Fill in the design with fabric paint pens.

Things You'll Need

  • Drawing
  • Computer
  • Scanner/digital camera
  • Ink jet printer
  • Transfer paper
  • Scissors
  • Iron
  • Ironing board
  • Cardboard
  • Pillow case
  • Light box
  • Drawing
  • Tape
  • Permanent marker/fabric paint pens
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About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.